Beaver Fact of the Week: Beaver meat counts as fish?

Technically, beavers are a mammal due to their milk producing abilities, fur/hair, and method of giving birth (live births as opposed to laying eggs). However, that didn’t stop the Roman Catholic Church from declaring beaver a fish during the 17th century.

fish_PNG1158
This is a fish.

For those of you who don’t have much experience with Catholicism, the 40 days before Easter are called Lent and during Lent you are not supposed to eat meat on Fridays, with the exception of fish. Now, the Bishop of Quebec was pondering whether or not he could eat beaver meat during Lent, and decided to follow Thomas Aquinas’ judgement in the Summa Theologica that an animal’s classification is determined by both habitat and anatomy. So, due to the aquatic nature of beavers habitat, the Bishop of Quebec figured that beavers ought to count as a fish since they live in ponds. Thus, people could eat beaver meat during Lent without worrying about breaking any rules.

Mt._Holly_Beaver_image_t670
This is a beaver.

Make no mistake, scientifically speak beavers are absolutely not a fish. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I’ll be chowing down on beaver meat anytime soon – regardless of whether the Catholic Church considers it a fish or mammal.

 

2 thoughts on “Beaver Fact of the Week: Beaver meat counts as fish?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s